When we go to the gym, the main focus is usually on losing weight or getting more toned and fit in general. However, few of us concentrate on flexibility, and this is an extremely important aspect of fitness in general.
The more flexible you are, the healthier and fitter you will be throughout your life, particularly when you get older. Here are some quick and easy ways you can increase your flexibility.
• Join a yoga class: Yoga is one of the best ways to increase your flexibility, so join the yoga class at your local gym to get started. Don’t worry if you’ve never done yoga before, since there are many great beginner classes that you can take part in. It’s great for your breathing, relaxation and also for losing weight and toning.
• Move more: Rather than sitting in the same position or crossing your legs for long periods of time, move your body around so you don’t become stiff and you maintain the flexibility you already have. This is important as you get older. If you’re tired, force yourself to get up and walk around for a couple of minutes.
• Eat good food: Rather than filling up on carbs, eat more proteins and drink plenty of water. Apart from making you feel much better in general, you’ll be more flexible and you won’t feel as bloated, which can play a huge part in making you feel less flexible.
• Don’t forget to stretch after your workouts: We love to stretch and warm up before workouts, but we forget how important it is to do the same afterwards also. Don’t rush straight home to sit in front of the TV or go to bed after a long day at work followed by an intense gym session, remind yourself to take a few seconds to stretch after your workout in order to keep your body flexible. All workout classes should encourage participates to warm up well both before and after their workouts.
• Don’t stretch too much: Contrary to popular belief, lots of stretching before cardio won’t make you more flexible. In fact, it could cause problems if you’re stretching too much, since you’re more likely to pull a muscle or make yourself stiffer.